Mr Monkey has been working on a book about the seedier side of the town’s maritime heritage.
As the book is almost finished and the Ark Royal is in town, Mr Monkey thought now is as good a time as any to share some of his work with you.
Whore of The Tyne explores the hidden world of dockside prostitution in South Shields and focuses on local woman, Ugly Betty, who in the 1960s and 70s frequented the Mill Dam area of the town and was notorious for selling companionship and sex to foreign sailors.
The book shows how the dockside sex trade differs from other sectors of the sex insustry and examines the main character’s solicitation strategies. It also explores the cultural dimensions of dockside relations and reveals a mundane reality far removed from mainstream society.
Beside Ugly Betty, the book also explores the role of club owners, taxi drivers, bouncers, barmaids and some of the more shadier characters who inhabit Ugly Betty’s world.
By delving deep in to the past and talking to some of the people involved, Mr Monkey allows readers to enter the dockside underworld and engage with the shadowy hustlers of this hidden realm.
Through the eyes of Ugly Betty, readers will be able to look at different elements of “the game,” as she relives her life as a dockside prostitute in the fantasy world she created for sailors from around the world.
Her story ends with her integration back into society and her gradual acceptance by the establishment who were instrumental in burying her seedy past – until now.